Saturday 21 May 2011

Change4Life: 60 minutes activity - some alternatives

If like my daughter your child isn't particularly sporty it can be hard to achieve the 60 minutes of recommended activity a day. In her case we are having to come up with alternatives that may not quite be as cardio intensive but do raise her heart rate and also help build up her muscles and her bones.

Since she was 5 my daughter has dabbled in using a longbow because of us as a family being part of the Medieval Siege Society. It's been hard for her to do much practice since we moved up north as 1) I'm not an experience enough archer to be confident to coach her 2) having somewhere safe to shoot sharp arrows. Luckily we have been given permission to use an orchard where she can set up her target and let loose:

Her longbow has a draw weight of 15 lb which means it requires quite a lot of effort for her to pull it back. She hasn't used this one much and still can't draw it back to its full extent. This means that even when she hits the target the arrow hasn't got enough weight behind it to stick in but does leave a mark to prove that she hit it:

As she is still only 7 she can't do it for too long in case she over develops her muscles on one side (just like the medieval archers did) but she gets a good workout. Her little brother prefers a different sort of medieval exercise and enjoys sword fighting. In a controlled manner this is great exercise for both cardio and strength building:

Have you got any more unusual energetic activities with your kids?

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